DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — The National Peanut Festival Parade will roll through Downtown Dothan on Saturday morning.
Officers tell us that the parade route will stay the same, but the biggest change will be the amount of officers and deputies that will stationed along the route to try and prevent what happened during last year’s parade.
“As far as personnel, we have added more personnel to the route as far as officers and the county’s sheriff’s department will be out there,” Dothan Police Lieutenant, Chris Watson said.
“We’re happy that safety is a priority,” Kathi Spence said.
Last year, shots rang out during the parade on West Montana Street in Dothan.
Officers say an argument between two people led to gunfire and one person was killed in the shooting and another was sent to the hospital with injuries. After the shooting, people were seen running away from the gunfire, and some people on top of floats were seen jumping into the beds of trucks for cover.
An incident that had nothing to do with the actual parade or the peanut festival.
“An isolated problem that happens anywhere and everywhere,” Lt. Watson said. “It did not have anything to do with the parade itself or the peanut festival. It was just a little grudge.”
The finishing touches are being put on the floats for this year’s National Peanut Festival Parade
As they prep to roll through Main Street in Dothan for the 2023 rendition of the parade.
“This is an annual event for us,” Spence said. “We always come to the parade on Saturday and then leave from here and go out to the festival and we enjoy it.”
Officers will begin closing the east side of Main Street starting Saturday morning at 5 a.m., so that they can begin lining up the floats and then at 7 a.m., they will start closing down some of the smaller streets along the route to prepare for the parade.
Saturday morning’s parade is set to kick off at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday and it will end when the last float completes its route.